A Breezier Day, A Warmer Night
An earthquake of 5.6 magnitude on the Richter scale struck Cianjur last November, leaving Nani Sumarni’s family in a devastating situation. Just two weeks prior to the earthquake, Nani’s husband had passed away, and she was now facing the terrifying aftermath of the disaster alone. On that day, Nani was at her house, preparing to perform her Dzuhur prayer. Suddenly, the ground trembled, and her house in Barukaso, Sukajaya Sub-village, Cianjur Regency, was shaken violently. The walls of her house crumbled down, and she was hit on the back. Adding to her troubles, she was nine months pregnant and had to cope with the loss of her husband all by herself. “I tried to free myself from the ruins by pushing the fallen wall off me,” said Nani.
For a while, Nani, who was pregnant along with her 11-year-old toddler, Razza, lived in a small and uncomfortable tent measuring 5X3 meters. The tent was made of tarpaulins and had a dirt floor. Ten days after the earthquake, Nani gave birth to her daughter in a hospital. After receiving care, she returned to the emergency tent with her two children. However, the condition of the emergency tent was far from ideal and posed a threat to the health of her newborn child. “We have been living in this tent for more than 4 months. It’s uncomfortable. During the day, it becomes really hot, and at night, it’s cold. When there’s a strong wind, especially if it comes with heavy rain, thunder, and lightning, I’m afraid that the tent will collapse,” Nani expressed her concerns.
After the passing of her husband, Nani faced challenges in finding a stable job, and she could only make a living by working as a daily laborer, earning a monthly income that usually didn’t exceed IDR 500,000. To support herself and her family, she had to participate in Habitat and Tithe’s Cash for Work (CfA) Program, which provided employment opportunities for participants to clean up the earthquake ruins. Through this program, Nani earned a daily income ranging from IDR 120,000 to IDR 130,000, with payments made during the first and last 5 days of work. Despite the unstable nature of the job, the program provided Nani with some financial assistance to meet her children’s needs.
Nani was really grateful for Habitat and Tithe’s programs. Not only she received a temporary shelter for her family, but also a source of income during such challenging condition, “Alhamdullilah, now I have an adequate shelter. It’s covered with sturdy walls, and overall, it’s much better than a tent. I have my own room equipped with a window and a door. My children and I can sleep safely and soundly both day and night.”
Her newborn child could live and grow safely in the temporary shelter. “My baby is stronger, considering other babies who live in emergency tents are prone to catch an illness. Thank you, Habitat and Tithe, who have built the temporary shelter for my family and me. I’m content that now I can live in a place as good as this.” She said wholeheartedly.